From analytical science reports, historical analysis, and writing assessments for music, drama, or photography, to RE essays, PE research reports, legal studies, or geography case studies—writing is everywhere.
As educators, we want quality writing: it’s a dominant means by which our students demonstrate their understanding. So how do we get students writing effectively in every area, with engaging material, in an environment where they feel motivated and supported? With Writer’s Toolbox, it's easy as pie.
Task Builder allows every subject teacher to create unique tasks—as broad or specific as you desire—to suit the material, student ability, and curriculum requirements of your classroom. Model to the class; collaborate and share with other teachers. Completely localise student tasks and assessments to the needs of your students. Want your PE students to write about athlete training at the local stadium and include photographs? Easy. Want your social studies students to write a story about life and times in Ancient Egypt and do a mind map using key words or phrases, linked to curriculum documents? Simple. Want your statistics students to write a Compare/Contrast Paragraph about an infographic using our handy scaffold? Effortless. It’s all there for you in Task Builder.
Task Builder is as flexible as you are. Whatever your subject level or age of your students, you can craft your task and set specific checklist parameters. Assign a year level, set word length, paragraph length, and a due date. Choose a planning tool—mind maps, box plans—then select from one of our eight powerful writing tools. You pick whichever suits your task best. Have to write an essay, a story, a poem, a report? All covered.
Push students deeper with extension activities and learning objectives: set keywords, require sentence or paragraph styles, and add visual prompts with your own images or choose from our gallery.
Managing tasks is simple, too. Make as many as you want: they’re all kept in one place. And for the meticulous, create folders to keep things organised. Made a killer task? Reduce workload by using the ‘Duplicate task’ feature to easily repurpose tasks for different year levels or subjects. Then share with any teacher in your school. Or ease the workload—each teacher in a subject team makes one task and shares it; by the end of term, you’ll have a suite of targeted tasks. It’s all right there at your fingertips.
“There are only a few subjects where there’s not a lot of writing. So that’s one thing I really love about Writer’s Toolbox. It’s not just for good students, it’s for every student.”
Jeremy Coley, Deputy Headmaster, St Paul’s Collegiate
For the student, digital distraction is minimised. Everything they need to complete a formative or summative task is here in Task Builder, within a single interactive environment. All of their plans, notes, resource PDFs, references, links to source material, imagery, auto-saved drafts, and corrections. And, once students have completed the task, teachers can use the built-in Writer’s Toolbox marking tools—grade, highlight, annotate comments—or export them easily into school reporting or marking systems.
Every day of the school year, we release two new on-demand writing activities. One for high school; one for primary school. Every daily writing challenge has an image and a writing prompt. From (mostly) serious skill building to sheer whacky, these daily quick writes are specially designed for maximum fun and engagement. Take the guesswork out of preparing an interesting activity to stimulate on-demand writing. Your students will love them.
Responses are automatically stored on Writer’s Toolbox, so teachers can refer back to them at any stage and track student writing progress. Multiple views provide options for student engagement and teacher modelling. Teacher view allows for projection to the class for group writing activities. And if you're concerned with the state of student handwriting, get them firing with pen and paper.
"It’s made our professional development amongst our team so much more fluid and we’re sharing ideas more easily. We have a common language in our teaching team and across the school."
Fiona Sutton, Teacher, Parakai School
Responding uniquely to your subject requirements or student needs is not just about the type of content you choose. Teaching well also involves considering the cognitions we demand of our students: the thinking skills they reveal on paper. Writer’s Toolbox does this seamlessly from early years to senior high. As your students mature, so does their thinking.
And we have a range of paragraph structures—with complete in-writer scaffolds—to guide and expand student thinking skills. From straightforward descriptive and deductive thinking, to inductive thinking and synthesis. Then, as they advance further, to extrapolation, derivation, and critical analysis. And the beauty of the Writer’s Toolbox writing approach is all these cognitions are put in easy-to-remember paragraph structures your students will love.
From the Lawyer Paragraph to the Hammer Paragraph to the Slam Dunk Paragraph and more, not only will student writing skills develop, you as the teacher can decide which paragraphs are more suited to your subject area—or adapt to all subject areas. The Scientist Paragraph doesn’t only support students in science; use it in any kind of report writing for any topic. And once students know the scaffolds in one class, they can use them in every other. In weeks, you will have a common (jargon-free) writing language emerging across your school. There’ll be no stopping the students—or the teachers.
What’s better than an entire school year’s worth of student-directed learning modules on writing? A complete system fully scoped and sequenced and linked to curriculum. That’s what you’ll find in our student Learning Journey.
Every writing skill students need to master across every year of their schooling. Flip your classroom, do a learning module for homework or lesson preparation, make a module part of weekly learning—or drive a literacy initiative. Implementing Writer’s Toolbox into lesson planning couldn’t be easier. And using our Learning Journey Manager, teachers can quickly access relevant national curriculum and literacy content descriptors for each module, across every school year level.